Luke, 14, is climbing Mount Everest for the NHS – without leaving his house

Luke pictured in his England kit having reached Base Camp. Photographs: Janet Harrison
18 Apr 2020 @ 6.35 pm
| Charity

York teenager Luke Smith is raising money for the NHS by climbing Mount Everest, step by step.

The 14-year-old Millthorpe School student is ascending the 15 stairs in his South Bank home 2,950 times, a total climb of 8,848 metres (29,029 ft) – equivalent to the height of the world’s tallest mountain.

Luke set out to raise money for NHS Charities Together and homeless charity Shelter.

Luke, who plays for York Volleyball Club and is a member of the England under-17 volleyball squad, said:

  • I wanted to make something out of a bad situation, stay fit during the lockdown and help good causes at the same time.

    NHS Charities Together are supporting the frontline workers who are caring for us during coronavirus and I chose Shelter to help the homeless in this time of crisis.

    That seemed appropriate when we are all being told to stay at home to prevent spreading the virus.

New stair carpet

Luke on his climb

Luke began his climb during the school Easter holidays and is completing around 400 steps per day.

Luke’s mum Janet Harrison said: “Luke is sports mad and he wanted to do something useful with his time while he is shut indoors.

“We’re really proud of him, but I think we will need a new stair carpet by the time he has finished.”

Luke has set up Just Giving pages for his two charities. To donate, log on to or